We don’t yet know when the next transfer window will be but, whenever it is, Manchester United could be set for a blockbuster one.
In normal circumstances, United would have their eyes firmly fixed on the England international. However, we aren’t living in a normal world right now. And Harry Kane has just put himself in the shop window.
“I want to become a top, top player. It’s not a definite: ‘I’m going to stay there forever.’ But it’s not a ‘no’ either. I’ll always love Spurs, but it’s one of those things. I’ve always said if I don’t feel like we’re progressing as a team or going in the right direction, I’m not someone to stay there just for the sake of it.”
Reports have emerged to suggest Tottenham have placed a £200million valuation on their captain. They won’t get that much for him but, as he’s comfortably their best player, they aren’t going to undervalue him publicly. From a business point of view, Daniel Levy might cash in on the England captain if a bid in excess of £100million is received.
Since the start of the 2016/17 campaign, Kane has missed 51 matches for Spurs due to injury. The longer this continues, the less valuable he becomes in the current market.
Former United defender turned pundit Rio Ferdinand wants his old side to move for both Kane and Sancho: “Harry has always been coy & held back but he’s dropped a couple of bombs [recently]. I know Man Utd will be in for him.
“I want Jadon to go to a team where he will play, improve & get trophies. I think United is the place for him.”
The likelihood is it’ll be either-or. So who should be the top target for the Red Devils?
When it comes to goals, Kane is Mr Reliable. Over the past two seasons, he’s averaged 0.47 open-play goals per 90, an overperformance of 0.11 compared to his expected goals figure.
He’s averaged 3.38 shots and 5.35 touches in the opposition box (per 90) – this while playing for a team not at their best. Spurs reached last season’s Champions League final but domestically they lost 13 matches. It’s been a similar story this term with ten defeats from 29 Premier League games.
If United opt for Kane and make him a key cog in their attack, he’ll score goals. And lots of them. The Red Devils have only averaged 1.5 goals per 90 this term in the Premier League. Defensively, Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s side have been fairly solid – conceding just 30 times this term. If they had a more reliable forward line, they’d be in the top four. It’s as simple as that.
Kane could be the difference-maker. But if those at Old Trafford want to assemble a fluid forward line, Sancho might be their best bet.
The BVB winger has been a revelation this term having switched from the right side to the left. The dribble map above shows what Sancho is all about.
On the right, he attacks the byline and looks to put the ball into dangerous areas. He’s a creator. On the left, however, he’s much more unpredictable and picks the ball up in deeper positions. He adds a ruthlessness to his game and his goal return swells.
Sancho could play on either flank. His versatility means United could name an interchangeable front three comprised of Sancho, Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial.
That trio would be supported by Bruno Fernandes giving Manchester United a three-pronged attack. Spreading the goals around has been a success for rivals Liverpool, it could well be a success at Old Trafford.
If United have to pick one player to sign, they should put all their eggs in the Sancho basket. It isn’t even a difficult decision to make.